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Volkswagen TDI Models

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  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 10,902
    A journalist with an international newspaper is interested in hearing from people who've bought Volkswagens in the last few years. If you'd like to share your story, we'll need your daytime contact information, vehicle model and year and, if you like, please also provide a brief overview of your ownership experience to date. Please respond to jfallon@edmunds.com by Tuesday, March 25.
    Thanks for your consideration and participation.

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    Share your vehicle reviews

  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    I don't have a TDI, so I don't know about chipping or whatever. I was thinking about trading my 02 1.8T for a TDI wagon later this year, but that's not a definite yet.

    I have been to a TDI get-together, and know about the UP chip and swiss cheese airboxes though.. :) I also met a guy, as I said before, who had his car running off veggie oil. Amazing!
  • natescapenatescape Posts: 176
    Averaged over time, diesel is typically about the same price as regular gasonline. In the summer, it's typically cheaper and in the winter, it's typically more expensive. It costs more in the winter because production is shifted to its sister fuel: home heating oil.

    But because of the superior MPG, diesel would have to be 30-40% more expensive than gasoline for it to cost as much to drive your car.

    Vocus, I would strongly disagree about it being pungent. I don't think it's any more strong smelling than gasoline... it's just different.

    As for the b100 at the pump, you can get a bunch of 5-gallon jugs, go and fill your car and the jugs, then blend it into your next few fill-ups and run a lower percentage. That's what I used to do, until I secured b100 drum delivery to my home. Now I just fill up in my driveway. :)

    And biodiesel emissions are sweet. Might even make you hungry. ;)
  • dgawlakdgawlak Posts: 1
    I,m considering a 2000 or 2001 TDI. I only travel 5 mi. to work. Is this going to be a problem for the diesel fuel economy ect...
        Should I go with the 1.8T instead?
  • natescapenatescape Posts: 176
    Short trips are bad on any car, and will hurt the fuel efficiency of any car. Make sure any car driven in such a manner is taken out for a "run" (as in, on the highway) of at least a half hour on weekends.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    I don't think you would truly reap the benefits of the TDI as much as one with a longer commute would. Used TDIs can be hard to find as well, from what I have heard. Your car probably won't have time to even produce heat in the little bit of time you drive, but they are very nice ones and far less complex than the 1.8Ts are.
  • maurcedesmaurcedes Posts: 38
    If you only travel 5 miles to work, you should be riding your bicycle. Seriously. At least three times a week.
  • deuskiddeuskid Posts: 20
    Pardon my ignorance, I'm only now researching a Jetta TDI purchase, but I'd like a quick explanation of what aftermarket chips and boxes that are available, why [isn't the stock TDI adequate] and the cost/benefit and potential harm from using them.

    thx
  • chmeeeechmeeee Posts: 327
    The stock TDI is most certainly adequate, I love all the torque that mine has stock. I am looking into a box simply because I like power, the more the better. I have driven chipped TDIs before, and they really give you a kick in the pants when you drop the pedal.

    The cost is about $400, depending on what you get. Really the only potential harm from using them is possible warranty problems if something breaks.
  • sebring95sebring95 Posts: 3,233
    Any more questions???? LOL!!

    There isn't enough space to type everything available for the TDI's. In a nutshell:

    Chips are available as an upgrade to increase power. These are rather permanent upgrades and are said to void warrantees.

    Boxes are a "plug-and-play" item that can be hooked/unhooked in a matter of minutes and have almost as much of a power increase as the chips. These void the warrantee as well, however since they're easily removed....you get the picture.

    In stock form, I feel the TDI is more than adequate. It's performance numbers may not be as high as other cars, but real-world driving they feel very strong IMHO. The chips add about 25% more power which is huge in terms of upgrades. That's why they're so popular. Some are better than others you just have to shop carefully. Figure $300-$450 will cover a chip or a good box.

    There are literally tons of other mods that can be done to increase performance even further. If driven reasonably you won't lose any economy with these mods, so it's the best of both worlds.

    I've installed a amsoil air filter and a VanAaken Smart Box (VASB) to mine and that's all I have plans for. The performance is more than adequate and I'm still averaging mid-40's in mpg. From my research the VASB is the best box but it's expensive. Some of the other boxes can cause a little smoke, or other issues. The VASB has been seemless for me, just a nice increase in power right across the board. Upsolute appears to be the preferred brand of chips.

    Obviously if you push for too much power, reliability becomes an issue. The european Jettas when stock have about the same level of power as ours after we "chip" or "box" them. The clutch is the weakest link and bumping power too high will compromise its' life. I believe the other drivetrain components can handle the power just fine.

    It's quite common to chip diesels. They react much more positively than a gas powered vehicle. I have a controller in my Ram diesel and I can bump the power in stages. I can jump up 120hp just with the push of a button. Cost me about $700 just for that but can you imagine the cost to add 120hp to a gasser?
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    So you don't have to do the chip AND the box then? I know about the 'swiss cheese box' trick, I have talked to several TDI owners about that one... :) I would prefer that one, because the dealer doesn't have to know anything about it.. :)
  • sebring95sebring95 Posts: 3,233
    I've come to realize there are more things you can do to these cars than I care to find out:)

    I'm not sure what you're referring to by "swiss cheese box". New one on me, guessing something with the intake?

    All I've done is thrown on an amsoil filter (mainly just for easy maintenance) and plugged the VASB box in. It can be velcro'd to the air box or inside the battery box. I could have it gone within five minutes, not that I have any warranty left anyway, LOL! I just wanted simple power and that's what the VASB is good for.

    I actually bought my VASB used from a member at a certain tdiclub website. $300 shipped to me. I've seen them on there rather often but you have to be fast to get one at a discount. Granted I only saved maybe $60 over a new one but at least I know I can get my money back someday if I want.

    Seems a lot of folks buy the boxes, then when they start modding other things they spring for the full-blown chips which I believe will work better in conjunction with some of the more involved mods.
  • deuskiddeuskid Posts: 20
    OK, I'll bite... how do I find out 'bout it? Does it involve eating worms or secret hand shakes? I've more than a passing interest to learn more. If you need to tell me outside this venue I'll give you my email address.

    thx,
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    Just add the '.com' to what you have already and you're in.. :)

    Very informative site.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    Drilled airbox, I think. Or else a tuning box. I know that's not new to you. :)
  • I heard that there is an inexpensive luggage rack that is available for my 2001 NB TDI. I have lost the link for one. Could someone tell me what is best, the one with bars on top, or the one that hooks to the trunk. Which carries the most, and has the less drag?

    Blessings,
    Ed
  • ddramddram Posts: 3
    Hi

    I am looking for a cargo rack as well... I saw one that had some wood details as well... anyone know where I could get one of these??

    By the way - after a lot of searching - I found a dealer that contacted his local VW rep to find the car I wanted... a NB TDI GLS Black on Black leather with 5 speed - The dealer said I probably will not get it till May or June. California dealers have been marking these cars up by $500 to $2000 because of the increased popularity/gas prices. But, I found one that will sell it to me for less than msrp! Can't wait!

    thx
  • deuskiddeuskid Posts: 20
    I am probably going to groan at my ignorance but I am not familar w/ the "NB" designation presented. What be it?
  • sebring95sebring95 Posts: 3,233
    insert groan here, LOL!
  • 8u6hfd8u6hfd Posts: 1,391
    The one from VW Driver's Gear Catalog?

    Thule (I believe supplies VW)
    Yakima
  • chmeeeechmeeee Posts: 327
    I have the roof rack from driver gear with the ski attachment, and its great. It fits the car perfectly, because there are posts underneath the weather stripping in the door that it attaches to.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    I am going to be getting a bike shortly, and I was thinking about getting the roof bike rack (I have a trunk carrier one, borrowed, right now). They are so expensive though...I guess I don't see spending $300 for the whole setup, only to carry a ~$200 bike on it.. :)
  • The cheapest I found was 157.15 dollars from Crowley Motors. Nice looking one. I am sure that is where I will go. My wife would rather have a rack on top than one on the back. Tough finding anything under 200 dollars, though.
  • deuskiddeuskid Posts: 20
    Does the TDI [or at what extreme] does the TDI have difficulty starting in cold weather? How is this best addressed? Fuel additives, engine heater...?

    thx
  • sebring95sebring95 Posts: 3,233
    I'm not aware of the TDI having problems starting. Mine started at -17F with no problems and plenty of folks up in Canada and Alaska drive these around. IF you were to buy bad fuel it could gel on you which is why you should always buy good fuel. Certainly doesn't hurt to run an additive. I run Standayne Performance forumla year-round. It increases HP and MPG, plus treats the fuel. There are also some cheaper product that are available that will keep fuel from gelling down to around -40F or so.

    On a certain tdiclub website, there is a member that has custom designed an engine heater for the TDI. I'm ordering one for next winter, just because it gives you instant heat when you start the car. It looks like a top-notch unit, very good parts and looks like a factory part. $100 plus shipping. A diesel takes longer to warm up than a car and idling doesn't help. You really need to drive it so basically it's cold for the first few miles. That's the only thing about the TDI that bothers me, so the TDI heater should fix that for good.
  • natescapenatescape Posts: 176
    I have never had a weather-related starting issue with my Passat (have replaced the starter, but that had nothing to do with fuel or temp). In fact, this winter was particularly friged in New England and I was running 30% biodiesel (www.biodeselnow.com) all winter, which will increase the fuel's gel point.
  • lewshellewshel Posts: 37
    I have had my 2003 TDI Golf GLS 5 speed for 3 weeks/2,000 miles. 46-50 mpg on the highway and 41 in the city. It is very quiet on the highway and would cruise at 90 if that were legal.
    I put on a leather steering wheel cover (Wheelskins)and will change the shift knob. Is this a job for the dealer?

    I also need to get a roof rack. I have the attachments from my old Thule from the Subaru we gave to my son. Will these fit on the rack sold by VW or do I need to a. Buy the VW and their hardware? ($300) b. buy a new Thule and locks.
    $230).
    I don't like window racks and it would be a shame to waste the Thule hardware for four bikes (2 for road, two for mt. bikes).
  • chmeeeechmeeee Posts: 327
    I would definitely recommend getting the rack made by VW, because the car is designed to accept the rack with posts underneath the weather stripping on the doors. I believe the rack is made by Thule and rebranded for VW, so you may be able to get the attachments to fit.

    How do they attach to the rack bar? With mine, there is a rail sunk into the top of the bar, and the attachments have bolts coming down from the bottom of them that slide into the rail. If by chance that is how yours works, then you are probably all set. Otherwise, I have no idea...

    Good luck!
  • lewshellewshel Posts: 37
    The Thules attachments for front fork/rear wheel are held by allen bolts which tighten the two parts together. They are meant to fit over the rectangular section crossbars. The mountain bike holders have U shaped loops which arte tightened by knobs which protrude through to the upper surface of the base plate on which the tray and swing arm are mounted. I think these would fit over a round crossbar but my dealer does not have a rack in stock and the parts man doesn't remember what the profile was. The VW illustration is too small to tell. HAS ANYBODY OUT THERE BOUGHT THE VW RACK?
  • chmeeeechmeeee Posts: 327
    I have the VW rack, I dont know if I made that clear in the previous post. I just took this picture, I hope it can help you.

    http://users.wpi.edu/~pbaxter/roofrack.jpg
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